Focus Raceday: Best Bets, Inside Mile for Muswellbrook and Taree

Module analyst Shayne O’Cass manages the Monday meeting rule across New South Wales.

Todd Howlett and Madeline Owen are expected to be in the winner’s stable at Muswellbrook on Monday when the team’s exciting and untapped three-year-old Talons hits the road.




Race 6 n. 7: claws

It couldn’t have been a more impressive win at Mudgee. Above average horse intended much better.

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Race 2 n. 2: Eva Daniela

Beat his last three at $ 2.70 and less, but finished second each time. I’ll go there one day.


Race 3 n. 1: Babayka

Second to Talons in Mudgee, then second again after the one in Dubbo. He makes obvious appeal.


Race 4: 7

Race 5: 3,4,7,9

Race 6: 7

Race 7: 4,6,7


Aaron Bullock is likely to have little chance of winning the TAB Jockeys Challenge, barring any Monday morning scratches.



Race 8 n. 3: spring break

Blueblood Kiwi gelding has its first start for new trainer Nathan Doyle improving them out of sight.


Race 3 n. 12: Rhone

Pierro started here for the first time with two really encouraging tests last month.


Race 4 n. 10: Miss Papal

He drew attention to his home debut in Port Macquarie when he ran very late over 1110m; 1257 m now.



She Hulk was in fabulous shape for this prep; for the record it is “x21221” and that victory in Armidale on April 12 was a breeze for Hinchinbrook’s daughter. Making his first run for Brett Cavanough; she just needs luck from the draw. Gidgee Guy is another horse making his “new stable debut”, in his case after 41 starts for Allan Denham, four of them win, 20 of them placing. That is fine. Upside has some decent track and distance stats.

Bet: she will win the Hulk


Leading Lady improved to second place when she finished third at Port Macquarie on April 4 in a 1208-meter race. The filly trained by Paul Perry has won up to 1500m, so it is fair to say that she is “able to win” here if she is good enough on the day. Ella Te Ama did nothing wrong in her three beginnings. Difficult to see her lose a place. Devil’s Inn had great excuses for the latest start; keep in mind that she won here on April 1st.

Bet: first woman to win, hat-trick box 3,4,7,9


Talons is an untapped character full of promise and talent. Extraordinary guy, he was probably the star of the Star Kingdom debut contest here behind Humble Star and Four Pillars winner Kiss Sum. You wouldn’t see a horse that’s stronger in line at Mudgee than this guy. Diamonds Galore would only have to reproduce its April 18th close to second here to understand. Lightfast is a Dundeel Gelding that could easily make a name for itself over time and on a little more ground. That said, 17 days ago he was a dominant winner in the 1000m.

Bet: Talons to win


Raworth Boy, a gelding raised by David Baxter from a great old Macquarie Stud family, ran extremely well on both sides of that easy inaugural win at Gunnedah on April 2. Brooke Stower rode the Exceed And Excel gelding that day and will be back (from the perfect draw) on Monday. West Germany is ideally located here for a number of reasons; fit, trip right, big draw, good last start and get 2kg discount.Vivenzo and All The Shops are both market watches.

Bet: Raworth Boy wins, quin 6., 7



Percontation has placed seven of his 12 starts including the last three. She is never beaten far, it’s probably a question of “when” and “if” she eventually wins. It’s the perfect match for Mare Coffs once again with just one imperfect draw. Casino Silk trained in Taree but failed to make it to the podium in all four heats at home. This could easily change on Monday. Honorable has placed in each of his three starts and it is clearly a huge possibility.

Bet: Percontation to win, triplet box 1,12,13,14


Kiss Her is a winner of the last start, drawn, Ben Looker, horse trained by Paul Shailer – there are already four boxes ticked. This is obviously a step up from her maiden, but neither is it a giant leap or an insurmountable one. Sippin Season has only won once of 21 starts, but his Taree record is three starts for a win and a third. Usually, indeed, almost always there. In Hot Water it took 14 starts to win, but he had placed seven times before and won quite easily here on May 2nd.

Bet: Kiss Her to win, Daily Double 1st keg (8), 2nd leg (3)


Hatsuko was raised by Greg and Donna Kolivos of Pierro fame. This descendant of the late 1980s crack filly Glory Girl landed some crafty bets with $ 31 in $ 17 in Newcastle on April 9, leading to a close win but still winning. She drew one that day, this time she has 13 (minus what comes out). Darci Diva is knocking on the door (loudly) after consecutive placings at Port Macquarie since he arrived at Paul Shailer’s from New Zealand. Rapid Rose makes demands.

Bet: one-way Hatsuko, quinella 2.7


Spring Break is just the coolest all day horse race in Taree. He is a Tavistock aided by Habibi who beat the males in the New Zealand derby. Another close relative, Mirror Magic, is also a rare Derby winning filly, in her case it was the classic WA. Long story short, this is his first ride for Nathan Doyle who can put a strain on a horse when he walks through his stable door – and the trials have been super! Too Much Class lives up to a race like this in its day.

Bet: Spring Break (best bet) to win

Originally published as Focus Raceday: Best Bets, Inside Mile for Muswellbrook and Taree